Skip to content
Radio on the kitchen table


How to prepare for a power cut?

What to do when the power goes out? Read the tips!

Read more

Updated 22.12.2022

For example, an extended power outage may result in a situation where society’s services are disrupted or even discontinued. Home preparedness is of great benefit to both society and, above all, to each individual themselves.

The 72h concept details the level of home preparedness

Keep in stock enough food to last at least 72 hours

In an urban environment, the importance of an emergency food supply at home is easily dismissed as shops and restaurants are close at hand. The home’s emergency supply should be stocked with items that are needed daily, such as food and water. The emergency supply can be made up of foods that the family eats normally. What’s important is that there is enough food in the pantry to last for the whole family for at least 72 hours.Ideal foods for the emergency supply have a long shelf life, can be prepared quickly and require little or no water to cook.

Emergency supplies are not a separate stockpile. The food items are used normally in daily life and replaced as needed.


Stock up on products that keep well and are ready to eat

  • bottled water, squash and concentrated fruit juice
  • fresh and canned fruit, vegetables and root vegetables
  • bread, crispbread, rice cakes and crackers
  • cereal, muesli, rolled oats, nuts and seeds
  • dried fruit such as raisins, prunes and dates
  • jams and chutneys
  • long-life UHT milk and non-dairy alternatives that can be stored at room temperature
  • canned fish, meat and beans
  • energy bars, biscuits, chocolate and crisps
  • Remember to cater for allergies and special diets – and also keep a sufficient stock of food for your pets!

Also stock up on

  • water storage containers with lids
  • a battery-operated radio and batteries
  • a flashlight
  • iodine tables (Important! Only to be taken when advised by the authorities)
  • non-prescription medication and hygienic supplies – notice essential prescription medications
  • duct tape or cling film

Protection and civil defence shelters

In many cases, seeking shelter in civil defence shelters is not the first measure, instead the population is primarily evacuated to a safer area.

If it became necessary to seek shelter, the authorities would provide separate instructions on measures required for buildings and properties that do not have their own civil defence shelters. The measures may include seeking shelter indoors or building temporary shelters.

There are no public civil defence shelters in Central Ostrobothnia Protection is based on the civil defence shelters of larger properties (residential buildings, schools, workplaces). A shelter may also be shared by several buildings. The owner of the building is always responsible for the civil defence shelter. 


Population warning system

In hazardous situations and emergencies, the authorities warn the public of a direct and imminent danger to the population with a general alarm signal and an emergency warning. The general alarm signal is sounded using sirens placed outdoors or, outside urban areas, mobile sirens on a vehicle.

  • The general alarm signal is a regularly rising and falling sound (7 seconds each) lasting for one minute, or a warning issued using loudspeakers.
  • The all clear signal is a continuous sound lasting for one minute. It indicates that the threat or danger has passed
  • The test signal is a continuous sound lasting for 7 seconds (at 12:00 noon on the first Monday of each month)

What to do if you hear the alarm signal

  1. Go indoors
  2. Close all doors, windows, air vents and ventilation systems
  3. Stay calm, turn on the radio and wait for instructions
  4. Avoid using the phone (including 112 calls) to prevent congestion on the lines
  5. Stay indoors
  6. Do not leave the area: travelling could be dangerous

Staying indoors and following instructions in a hazardous situation is the first step to protecting yourself, and it is usually enough. Everyone should recognise the alarm signal and know what to do when you hear it.

An emergency warning is always issued as the alarm signal goes off

The emergency warning is broadcast on all radio channels and, if necessary, posted on YLE’s, MTV3’s and Nelonen’s teletext page 112 as well as shown in television programmes as running text on top of the screen. The purpose of the emergency warning is to warn the public about a hazardous incident and to give them instructions.


An alarm signal is sounded in the event of a gas leak or radiation hazard


If you are already indoors and smell gas

  • put a wet cloth in front of your mouth and breathe through it
  • go upstairs and stay there if possible
  • stay calm, listen to the radio and wait until the danger is over

If you are outdoors and cannot go inside

  • move in a crosswind direction to try and get away from the gas cloud
  • go to a location that is as high as possible, such as a hilltop
  • put wet clothing, grass, peat or moss in front of your mouth and breathe through it



The radiation situation is continuously monitored throughout Finland. Even very minor changes in radiation levels are detected at once, and citizens are informed immediately.

  1. Go indoors. Seal the doors, windows and air vents (adhesive tape, towels, clothing) and shut off the ventilation system. This way you can keep radioactive particles out. Move to central parts of the house/flat. The best protection is offered by an underground, well-sealed basement with no windows.
  2. Prepare to take an iodine tablet. Only take an iodine tablet if you are told to do so by the authorities on the radio or TV. Iodine tablets prevent the accumulation of radioactive iodine in the thyroid gland but do not provide any other protection against radiation. Be prepared in advance and purchase iodine tablets at a pharmacy. You may not/cannot go out and buy iodine tablets in the middle of a hazardous situation.
  3. Protect water and food – also for animals. Package food in tight containers or plastic bags. Put the tightly sealed foods into a fridge or freezer, as these appliances give effective protection against radioactive dust. Also protect food, fodder and water intended for animals.
  4. Read, listen to and look up additional instructions and follow the media. More instructions will be issued by the rescue authorities, the police, the Ministry of the Interior or the Finnish Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority, usually on all media including the radio, television, the Internet, and Yleisradio’s teletext pages 868 (Rescue services) and 867 (Radiation safety pages). Be cautious about social media publications and check their source.

I have to go out – do I?

Think carefully: do you really need to go out? If you find that you do, put on tight-fitting clothes that cover your entire body and skin. For example, you could wear rain clothes. Use a respirator mask or cover your face with a towel or a paper towel to prevent radioactive particles from entering your lungs. When you return, rinse the rain clothes before coming inside (if possible). When you come in, take all your clothes off in the hall, close the hall door and wash yourself carefully.